Homemade Mild Italian Sausage

Total Time:
8 hr 45 min
Prep:
45 min
Inactive:
8 hr

Yield:
about 3 pounds of sausage
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • 3 pounds well-marbled pork butt, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons toasted fennel seeds
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground anise
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped Italian parsley leaves
  • 3 tablespoons dry red wine
  • Pork casings, optional
Directions

Combine the pork butt, garlic, paprika, fennel seeds, salt, pepper, cayenne, anise, parsley, and red wine in a large bowl and toss well to coat. Refrigerate covered overnight or up to 24 hours.

Pass the mixture through a meat grinder fitted with a medium die. (Alternately, transfer to a food processor in 2 batches and process until finely ground.) To test the seasoning, heat 1 teaspoon oil in a small skillet, and cook about 2 teaspoons of the mixture. Adjust seasonings, to taste.

Using the sausage attachment on a mixer, stuff the meat into the casings, if being used. Twist and tie off to make 4-inch sausages. Alternately, shape into patties. Cook sausage in usual manner, making sure the internal temperature of the sausage links reaches at least 150 degrees F. Uncooked sausage can be stored in the refrigerator up to 3 days or freeze and use within 3 months.


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    Very good; thank you Emeril! People who have commented prior to this have complained about too much or too little spice and that just goes to show how subjective the matters of taste are. I had a pork butt close to 4 pounds rather than 3 so I was generous with fennel, anise, pepper, salt, and paprika (meaning my spoonfuls were brimming). As for cayenne I used twice as much plus added some chili flakes and about 10 cloves of garlic which I mellowed by toasting them first with their skins on. All and all, we have some good and authentic Italian sausage makers in my county but I may just grind my own from now on!
    I thought this recipe was the bee's knees! I was too lazy to go to the store so I skipped the red wine & parsley, and I added some Italian herbs as well. I think it was just fantastic, much better than store bought. I don't know if I'll ever be able to buy Italian sausage from the store ever again. I served the sausage in some minestrone but tonight I'm going to grill it and serve it with angel hair and red sauce. One more thing, I don't use traditional Hungarian paprika, I use smoked Spanish paprika from Penzey's.
    Great recipe but short on flavor. I assed a pinch of nutmeg, sugar,ground fennel, and onion powder. I also doubled the herbs and added fresh sage and basil. Double the garlic too!
    I have made this recipe 4 times and it is delicious. I usually make it on the spot with the weekends extra breakfast sausage about a 1/2 pound at a time its great because its fresh and I don't have Italian sausage that's been frozen for 3 or 4 months
    I made 9 pounds of this exactly per Emeril's recipe, when I made the test patty, my hubby and I were hooked, made 6 more pounds today, and will be using some for meatballs for spaghetti tomorrow! Next time I get some pork butts I'm trying his breakfast sausage!!!
    I started with ground pork, used the same seasonings plus some crushed red pepper (we wanted some spice. This is AMAZING! No need to buy Italian sausage anymore. I also shaped them into meatballs to serve with rigatoni. Delicious!!
    I used this as just a guide line. Only had about 1-1/4 lb of ground pork. Added toasted fennel seeds after I crushed them, and threw in minced garlic , S & P, paprika, cayenne, crushed red pepper flakes, lots of chopped parsley, grated romano, oregano, basil and herb de provence. Added about a quarter cup of white wine, (saved my red to drink and added water to make it more moist. After mixing well, I made several testers until it was just right. Am letting it sit in the fridge till tomorrow then I'll test again and make into patties. All in all I must say it is pretty darn good.
    I am fairly new to sausage making and have tried a few different recipes for the Italian fair. This recipe turned out to be a big hit. Great taste. As always, Emeril is on top of his game.
    This made fantastic Italian sausage - I used 3# of ground pork and 1# of ground turkey, and just adjusted the spices accordingly. I did add about double the wine amount. Then made lasagna with the sausage - OMG - it was so yummy! And no, this tastes nothing like Olive Garden sausage - this is great!!! Don't believe I will ever buy pre-made Italian sausage again - this is too wonderful and really not that tough!
    This was so good I made 12 pounds of it. It is so much more flavorful than the stuff you get at the super market. I'll never buy Italian sausage again.
    You said it had a little too much pepper. Generally, a little more pork butt cures that problem. But when said your standard of Italian sausage was based on Olive Garden, I didnt even finish your review. I am an Italian, and my family has been making home-made sausage for over 50 years at Christmas time, and there was no recipe handed down. We do it by trial and error( a little bit of this, a little bit of that, try it, maybe a little more). We tried this recipe and it wasnt bad, compared to ours. In ours, when you add something its a major operation getting the seasoning distributed well. The key tothis recipe is to make sure that the seasonings are well distributed. But if your standard of Italian food has Olive Garden in it, you are totally not qualified to review any Italian recipe, because no Italian wouldnt be caught dead near that place. Its like using a deli in Dubai as a standard for all kosher delis.
    Yes, it is a bit spicy but I wouldn't change a thing. The combination of the flavors is incredible - I find they compliment one another rather than one flavor overwhelming another!!!
    I've made this recipe several times. I cut the black pepper and cayenne down by half. It's still spicy. We're from the South and like spicy food, but this is too much pepper for 3 lbs of pork. Other than that the recipe is exceptional.
    Sorry, there's nothing amazing about this sausage. It has the requisite fennel to make it "italian", but the pepper stands out like a sore thumb. People that eat a lot of black pepper probably don't notice that that's the dominant flavor. If I hadn't noticed the pepper, this sausage would have been very, very good. And my kids abhor anything that makes their tongues sizzle at all, so all that pepper kind of ruined it for them. I don't think "mild" anything should taste so much like pepper. (And no, I didn't mess up Tbsp vs tsp or any other aspect of proportions.)
     

     
    I've never been to Italy, but I spent a couple of years in Spain. I've always imagined tastes to be similar, both being north of the Mediterranean Sea. And none of the Spanish people I met did much of anything with black pepper. I'd be very surprised to find out that Italians load it up on everything they eat. Seems more of an American thing to me.
     

     
    Anyway, real Italian sausage (well, at least the kind I eat at Olive Garden or buy as "Mild Italian Sausage" at the store) doesn't have any of the peppery taste that this does, so I don't think I'm off-base here.
     

     
    Still, it is very good. It tastes good. I gave 3 out of 5 stars just because it's not what I would have hoped to taste based on the name.
    Super easy.....I bought a 9lb whole pork loin because I like it a little leaner. I purchased the gadgets for my stand mixer years ago, but was never brave enough to try sausage. I WILL NEVER BUY SAUSAGE AGAIN. This recipe has the flavors I remember from my childhood. It was so easy, and I will never have to pick out the junk (bones, veins, just plain nasties) again!! Thanks again Emeril.
    Excellent flavor. Very easy to make. Kicks up tomato sauce when browned as bulk sausage and used as base meat.
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